Those [With] Dispositions Cruel [And] Fierce, [Are In] Every Matter Not As Good As Other Persons
You, since knowing [your] disposition [i.e. ‘natural’ emotions] [is] cruel [and] fierce, should constantly have ‘I [am in] every matter not as good as [other] persons’ [as] thought.
[Note 1: Being quick and ill tempered over many matters is to be heavily poisoned by the anger, the second but most swiftly destructive of the three poisons (三毒) of greed, hatred and delusion (贪嗔痴). Just this alone, in terms of poor anger management skills, makes it true that one is ‘not as good as other persons’. Even if one has other meritorious virtues (功德), anger ‘burns’ to destroy them quickly every time it flares up. In this way, one really can become ‘not as good as other persons’ in ‘every matter’.]
Even if [other] persons betray my virtues, [you] also should have ‘I [have] betrayed [other] persons’ virtues’ [as] thought.
[Note 2: When others betray our virtues, this is karmically due to us having betrayed others’ virtues in the past, even if not remembered. It is also karmically natural that others tend to let down those habitually angry, especially if we were unreasonably angry towards them, which is to betray others’ virtues.]
Feeling oneself, towards all people, [to] all having shame, apologies [and] regrets endlessly, thus [will] anger that [is] cruel [and] fierce, then [be] without cause [to] arise.
[Note 3: Since there is only one thought in each moment, when repentant qualities opposite of anger are constantly present, anger will not be able to arise at all. For example, where there is much ice in a place, there cannot be even a single small flame in the same place.]
[Note 4: There should also be mindfulness of Buddha (念佛) permeated in everyday life, such that evil qualities (like anger), which are the opposite of the purity he represents, will not arise. With mindfulness of Buddha, connecting to his blessings, one becomes more ‘Buddha-like’ in the moment, thus less likely to become angry, in the next moment too.]
[Note 5: If there is yet to be substantial improvement in anger management (or anger dissolution) despite practising mindfulness of Buddha, this means practice is not substantial enough yet – needing more sincerity and diligence.]
All anger that [is] cruel [and] fierce, all from arrogance then arises. Since feeling oneself [to be] everywhere apologetic, naturally [will] anger [be] discouraged [and your] mind [be] calm, not because [of] conceit [and] pride, with [these] bullying people.
[Note 6: Anger stems from arrogance, which originates from attachment to self, which is the fundamental delusion. Ironically, while those arrogant are strongly attached to their illusory self, they actually have nothing substantial to be arrogant about. Awareness of arrogance is thus cause to have humility instead – with shame, apologies and regrets.]
Pure Land Tradition’s 13th Patriarch Great Master Yìnguāng
Dharma Master Yìnguāng’s Collected Writings (Third Compilation): Reply Letter [To] Hǎo Zhìxī;
Record [Of] Great Master Yìnguāng’s Collected Writings’ Essence (121st Short Section): 3rd [Chapter]: Guidance [On] Practice Methods: Third, Clear Remedies [For] Habitual Tendencies (28th Short Section)
[Ref: #121 / 3.3.28]
Namo Amituofo : Translation and notes by Shen Shi’an
Record Of Great Master Yìnguāng’s Collected Writings’ Essence